Top 15 Albums Of 2007
15. Justice – Cross
Justice’s Cross has been a defining album for many of us this year, incredible well produced taking you on an electro journey. The diversity of the sounds has even made it commercial friendly which has seen Justice become one of the biggest things in Dance Music since Daft Punk. Their DJ Set in January at Big Day Out was average, however their live performance in September during Parklife saved their reputation with me.
14. Chemical Brothers – We Are The Night
Talking about big things in Dance music The Chemical brothers came out with their latest album this year and showed that they never want to slow down. Fitting perfectly into what is happening right now in dance music and even bringing it further forward. I have not been able to get enough of All Rights Reserved with the Klaxons although I have never heard it played out or really spoke about before. Will be seeing the Chems for the first time in March, should be a spectacle.
13. !!! – Myth Takes
!!! (Chk Chk Chk) Was a band who I only heard about this year through a friend who was going to a very small gig of theirs at a bar called Alhambra. I purchased this CD that week and went along to this sweaty packed gig, muscled my way up the front and was absolutely amazed at how tight this band was. I was able to grab the drummers drum stick and get it signed at a bar afterwards. This is a really smart and sophisticated album and their talent is shown throughout it.
12. ToMyBoy – messages
I have got into a lot of bands this year through remixes I have come across first. ToMyBoy was another example of this when I heard the Sinden Remix of Model. I had no idea that when I went searching for the originals they would stay so electric and I was very impressed. Real dancey, fun and geeky album.
11. Chromeo – Fancy Footwork
I had been hearing a bit of Chromeo’s work (remixed and original) for quite some time before this album came out so it was highly anticipated for me. They have probably been the best remixed band I have heard this year other then maybe The Klaxons. Their originals however really take it down a level with real smooth, funky, hip hop electro which is sure to get the ladies in the right mood every time. I am seeing these guys in a few days for New Years Eve in Melbourne with Spank Rock and Felix Da Housecat – can not wait – I think It will just top off a perfect year.
10. Midnight Juggernauts – Dystopia
I have been following the Midnight Juggernauts since they first started coming into the scene and have seen some absolutely awesome live performances, including ones at The Zoo, Tivoli, Splendour and Round and Round. Seeing them before their album was released really built my anticipation for this record as I could see how much of an remarkably talented and tight band they were. Dystopia did not disappoint, they took risks and really came off on top – This album is the closest thing you will get to going to space.
9. Kaiser Chiefs – Yours Truly Angry Mob
I never purchased the first Kaiser chiefs album however I always enjoyed the few tracks I had heard. I knew with my driving love for indie rock I was going to have to get a hold of their new album as soon as it came out. It only took one listen and I was instantly amazed at how cool this album sounded. I was honestly expecting a more electronic attempt at indie rock, progressing from their first album tracks such as Na Na Na Na Na, O My God and Every Day I Love You Less and Less. However what I heard was almost a prequel to their first album – it was like they had stepped back and really just got the grass roots of indie rock. Unfortunately due to their clash with Hot Chip at Splendour I am still yet to see the Kaiser Chiefs live.
8. The Wombats – A Guide To Love, Loss and Desperation
This is the last album I bought and to go straight to Number 8 after only about a month or two of listening shows its quality. I guess I will always have a soft spot for UK indie rock (as you can probably see from this list) but shit this album sounds good. I love guitars, I love meaningful lyrics, I love a good rock beat and I love charisma within the music – The wombats deliver all this like pros although this is only their first album. It is a really easy album to listen to and their vocal harmonies are absolutely amazing, sounding like a couple of them have been classically trained. I will be seeing these guys in March next year and I am sure they are going to put on a very exhausting show.
7. Calvin Harris – I Created Disco
I first heard about Calvin Harris in a feature article in the July issue of Mixmag where they were not only talking about his incredible productions but also his instance superstardom and popularity. This made me a bit hesitant at grabbing his album as I thought it was possibly going to be a Pop album where every little kid would be singing along to and would make me feel rather sheepish. However once I got over this stupid train of thought and purchased this album I was so glad I did. Although tracks like The Girls is nothing short of electronic pop music you can not hold that against him. His productions throughout the album are top class and absolutely addictive. It is electro pop at its best and I am getting the chance to see him (and his live band) produce this magic in February at Good Vibes. Fuck yeah.
6. Digitalism – Idealism
I have always had the upmost respect for Digitalism because of what they have continued to produce over the last two years. I first saw these two geeky looking German dudes last year in about April when Modular was cool enough to bring them over to support The Presets before they had more then only a few remixes and productions released under their belt. Zdarlight, their remix of Fire In Cairo by The Cure, Tom Vek Remix, and Tiga’s Far from Home remix was enough to get me very excited about this duo. However their live performance on two lap tops was less then impressive although still very fun. Their secret DJ gig at The Empire’s Moonbar afterwards with about 2 other people on the Dance Floor absolutely defined my taste in electro music. Idealism did not disappoint this high expectation I had of the boys and they delivered one of the best electronic albums of the year even gaining that medal that only a few others have (including Justice) of being the next Daft Punk. Their live show at Parklife in September this year was highly impressive bringing percussion and vocals into the mix, I danced non stop.
5. Goose – Bring It On
Duck, duck, duck – goose, goose, goose, goose. What an absolutely god send these boys were this year. I first heard about them on the Soulwax fan site when it was mentioned that this was the Soulwax tour guitarists band who I had seen absolutely kill it at big day out a couple of years ago. I was at work and I immediately downloaded the album off itunes with great excitement of what could be around the corner with another group of Belgium electronic brains. From the first synth and bass combination of Black Gloves my foot instantly started to inappropriately bounce off my office floor carpet and a smile that definitely had nothing to do with debits or credits swept my face. The sound was so dirty yet so crisp and clean and I fucking loved it. I had predicted these guys for Parklife however it was more wishful thinking. When the announcement was made my heart jumped and even a lineup which included Justice, Digitalism, The Sounds and Yelle was not at all initially noticed because it was buried in my excitement to see these guys. Thank you Parklife for keeping festivals cool and such a great day.
4. The Sunshine Underground – Raise The Alarm
3. LCD Soundsystem – Sound Of Silver
James Murphy and his LCD Soundsystem hold a spot very close to my musical heart just behind Soulwax as the group who got me into live electronic music. It was their first self titled album which kept me absolutely gob smacked at this progressive, electronic, rhythmic compilation which with a bit of patients can be some of the best tracks you will ever hear. I must say that this album along with the below two were the albums I could just not wait for. Listening to Sound of Silver you can just hear the professionalism that James Murphy has in producing music, it is absolutely perfectly composed and the long progressions that he is known for keep me so excited throughout each song. I have never skipped an LCD Soundsystem song and I never will. I finally get my chance to see them at The Big Day out in January and I am already feeling a little sick thinking about it.
2. Maximo Park – Our Earthly Pleasures
If Soulwax and LCD Soundsystem defined my taste in live electronic music then Maximo Park and Bloc Party through their first albums definitely defined my taste in UK Indie Rock. Maximo Park with their first album in 2005 really grabbed me and spun a new exciting web for my musically taste. I had never listened to rock music which was so emotional and catchy before this. Seeing them in 2005 at The Zoo (Blogs Main Picture up the top taken from that night) was definitely still one of the best gigs I have ever been to. When I got my hands on Our Earthly Pleasures this year it was not long till I released that this album was even better. They had kept the same formula yet started to use their keyboard as a more lead role and once again produced emotionally charge indie rock greatness. I got the chance this year – 2 years later to see them again at The Zoo, my excitement however got the best of me and so did the vodka and through only my fault was the gig not as good as the first (Probably my biggest regret in music this year).
Maximo Park – Girls Who Play Guitars
Maximo Park – Books From Boxes
1. Bloc Party – A Weekend In The City
O Bloc Party – Every ones favorite band in 2005 however not every ones in 2007. To me they just accelerated further up that ladder into superstardom and immortal life. This band in 30 years will be my Led Zeplin and I am sure of that only after 2 Albums. Every one can remember the fun and energy which Silent Alarm produced and listening to the album now brings back great memories of a time where one album was doing such great things. A Weekend In The City had been out for a couple of weeks before I was able to give it a listen and before this I had heard some people not saying such great things about it. My first listen of the album was a little distracted but I was immediately excited and already claiming that this was a fucking good album. This distracted listen happen a few more times until I really got the chance to sit down by myself with a blasting stereo and the song lyrics in front of me. What happened that day brought this album into a whole new place, I felt Kele describing the feelings from within him and others of a typical weekend in the city.
Hunting For Witches the feelings of paranoia and fear the media injects into us on a daily basis, and trying to find reason around it all.
Waiting for the 7.18 – Thinking about the past, your childhood when you were happier, longing for that feeling of happiness which seems so far gone, reaching it for a moment and wishing you could do it all again.
The Prayer – The feeling of wanting recognition, and striving for it on a night out when you can be some one else – the person you always wanted to be. Using the dance floor, some thing you know you’re good at to reach the feeling of achievement you can’t day to day.
Uniform – A song about school kids and the struggle to fit in. Conforming to trends and what is cool because you have to. Rebelling against society and hiding your real feelings behind juvenile behavior. The constant struggle to find yourself in a world which will not accept you. Escaping again and never releasing your full potential. This is my favorite song of the year – so good.
On – This is a song about self destruction but also fun. Drugs, drinking and the confidence you can feel while on them.
Where Is Home – I believe this track is about the struggle of young blacks in the UK and is based on the death of one. Rebellion about the way they are made to feel and the way they take out these emotions on the rest of the town. Unable to find themselves in modern society they are confused and lost, pain and anger are evident throughout this track.
Kreuzberg – A Very personal song about a trip to East Berlin. Kele speaks about his struggle to feel love and inability to connect with any one. He starts to feel regret from all the times he has just had sex and not felt any think because now he wants to feel. He meets some body on a night and excitement fills his mind with hope and joy at the chance that this could be it. However nothing has changed and he still feels the same, unable to feel. The last line is truly sad – “Concerned mothers of the west, Teach your sons how to truly love” Obviously his never did.
I Still Remember – Another very personal song and the first time Kele has spoken clearly about being a homo sexual. It is the story of the love he felt for some one at school, all the great times they had however not being able to come out to his friend and the feeling of regret that he never did. Looking back and thinking we should of, we could of and how much fun they might have had.
Sunday – I think this could possible be the only song on the album which has not got a sad theme. It’s all about having a big night and waking up with some one you love and being able to make the most of that usually horrible day because you are with them.
SRXT – By the time I got to the last song I had already been taken through a rollercoaster of emotions by Kele’s absolutely incredible lyrics. However I was still not prepared for the absolute miserable words which would come from SRXT. A song describing nothing more then depression but doing it so well. Many of the lyrics are I think taken from a suicide note and the whole song may in fact be a suicide note that was never given to any one. As the last notes twinkle to an end as the words are slowly mumbled out “Tell my mother I am sorry And I loved her” my heart completely sunk and I was left sitting their staring at the completion of this CD amazed at how it made me feel. It is accompanied by perfectly set music and there is no way that any thing could beat it this year for me. They were also the best performance I saw all year at Splendour. Every one who has not really listened to A Weekend In The City is always saying “It is not as good as their first one” Silent Alarm was full of energy and fun – This album was full of perfect compositions and emotions – You can not compare the two as they are both brilliant.
Hope you all had a Merry Christmas and have a great New Years whatever you might be doing! Thank you all for your support.
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